C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


MC admits to dragging its feet on projects
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
The municipal corporation today accepted the fact it had been unable to implement decisions on several major projects that had been approved by the house a long time back. In today’s monthly general house meeting councillors drew up a long list of projects that had not taken off even though some were cleared five years ago.

Referring to the construction of an “international” stadium that was proposed in 2008, nominated councillor Brig Kuldeep Singh Chandpuri pointed out for three years officials could not decide who would build it. There was uproar in the house and all the councillors were up on their feet after receiving a reply from the sports director stating MC officials would have to handle the issue themselves.

Similarly, the MC has not even completed the tender process for the Mahilla Bhawan project that was approved in 2008 and for which land was allotted. Most councillors also pointed out work on road, horticulture and public health projects cleared by the house two years ago had yet to commence as no contractor had bid for the tenders.

MC mayor Anu Chatrath admitted projects allotted under the ward development funds of the area councillors like installation of benches and repair of play equipment in parks were pending with various departments for the past six years. She asked officials to prepare a list of all such projects and complete them on a priority basis.

Councillors raised objections as to why MC officials were not following the time schedules laid down by the house to complete the projects.

During zero hour of the meeting BSP councillor Jatinder Bhatia said in 2009 the house had approved four development projects with a deadline of two months for completion. “However, till date not even the tenders for these projects have been floated”, she noted.

Similarly Congress party councillor Pardeep Chhabra pointed out work on installing benches in parks, which was supposed to begin six months ago, had yet to be taken up by the department concerned.

Nominated councillor Amrit Bolaria expressed “surprise” that in the past 13 years MC officials had not been able to devise a “proper system” for completing projects. “The existing work culture in the corporation lends to inefficiency and lack of transparency”, she averred.

Councillors accused officials of following double standards in dealing with defaulting project contractors. Referring to the recent incident of allotment of tertiary treated water works to the same contractor, whose work had been rejected and penalised for delay in work, Congress councillor Chander Mukhi Sharma asked under which clause had the work been again allotted to the same contractor. On the other hand the contractor who was involved in the cement scam in April was blacklisted and all his contracts had been cancelled, he observed.

Nominated councillor Pallav Mukherjee demanded certification from the MC commissioner, chief engineer, superintending engineer and executive engineer for the need to recarpet two roads in Sector 17 - one from the MC building towards the bus stand and the other located near Taj Hotel - at the cost of Rs 1.5 crore despite existing roads being in “perfect condition”.

Fruitless discussion

Instead of discussion on modalities of transfer of certain departments to the MC from the Chandigarh administration, the House on Friday wasted precious time in expressing gratitude to UT Administrator Shivraj Patil, Union Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal and Mayor Anu Chatrath. In the hour-long “fruitless discussion”, even the opposition councillors did not bother to make any constructive suggestions while the ruling and nominated councillors were more vocal on other departments the corporation could demand from the administration. It was decided that the Mayor should prepare a proposal to get primary education, health, social welfare, malaria, road tax, excise and taxation departments transferred from the administration.


l Nominated councillor Pam Rajput again raised the proposal of providing laptops to all councillors. Besides this she also recommended the councillors’ honorarium should be raised from Rs 5,000 to Rs 25,000 per month.

l Nominated councillors acted as teachers for the elected ones during the house proceedings. There were repeated requests to “behave yourself” along with advice.

l The house was disrupted for almost half an hour after BJP councillors alleged mayor Anu Chatrath had instructed officials not to go ahead with development projects in the opposition councillors’ areas. Chatrath said she would “resign from the chair” if the BJP councillors proved the allegations.

l The mayor ordered an inquiry by an independent agency on reallotment of project contracts to the same contractor whose contracts had been withdrawn earlier

l The mayor instructed officials to prepare a detailed report on the requirement of staff in every department



City’s Plan Budget rises to Rs 684 cr
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
Registering a whopping increase of Rs 234 crore (about 52 per cent), Chandigarh’s Plan Budget has been pegged at Rs 684.91 crore - a development which will go a long way in accelerating development in the city.

A decision to this effect was taken at the high-level meeting of the Planning Commission, attended among others by Adviser to the UT Administrator Pradip Mehra,Home Secretary Ram Niwas and Finance Secretary Sanjay Kumar.

While the Chandigarh Administration’s demand for Rs 900 crore Plan Budget did not find favour with the Planning Commission, the enhanced outlay would cater to financial needs of major UT projects, including Metro, international airport, slum rehabilitation project and improved infrastructure for the city. In fact, the lion’s share of Rs 190 crore has gone to the slum rehabilitation project, which had run into rough weather due to the virtual failure of Parsvnath’s Prideasia in the IT here. A major part of the funding for the resettlement housing scheme was to come from Rs 1,600 crore accruals from the Prideasia project.

In the Union Budget 2010-11, the non-plan outlay showed a decline of Rs 10.68 crore from Rs 1,478.68 crore to Rs 1,468 crore than the last financial year.The plan outlay registered a marginal increase of Rs 69 lakh from Rs 449.22 crore to Rs 450.91 crore.

The 234-crore increase is the highest increase in Chandigarh’s history in the revised Plan Budget. The UT got Rs 120 crore more (up from Budget Estimates of Rs 319.22 cr to Rs 449.22 crore) in the revised Budget Estimates in 2009-10.

Slum rehab on the roll

Chandigarh Administration’s ambitious Rs 1187-crore slum rehabilitation project to resettle about 25,000 families of the illegal squatters seems to have got a shot in the arm following an increase of Rs 190 crore for the project.The Rs 190-crore hike will prevent the project from being derailed at least for the time being



MC locks out slum children
Evicts them from creche and vocational centre as lease of propety had expired
Swati Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
Slum children in a crèche run by the Youth Technical Training Society (YTTS), a city-based NGO in Sector 25, and in a vocational training centre in Palsora, have found themselves on the road after they were forcibly evicted by the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation (MC) yesterday. The latter justified it, saying the lease of the property had expired.

For the hapless innocent children, however, it has become a nightmare. Many of the children were seen sitting out in a porch unable to fathom why they were locked out. Parents, who came to collect their children, could be seen visibly disturbed. “Why are the doors of the NGO locked?” was the commonly asked question.

The two community centres were a place of both learning and leisure for these children. When this reporter visited the site, the children in Sector 25 were seen sitting under a tree in the courtyard outside the locked rooms of the centre. Their parents, who usually work as daily wagers leave them here. The children, who mostly belong to daily wagers living below the poverty line, are educated at the centre and also served meals.

Most of the children who come to this centre are keen on becoming either an engineer or a doctor. Aman, whose father is a garbage picker said, “I want to become a doctor when I grow up. I have learnt the alphabet here and want to continue studying.”

While young girls, who are taking vocational training in beauty and tailoring from the centre in Palsora, were perturbed to see the sewing machines lying out in the sun. The MC had thrown out all charts and equipment yesterday, said Sunita, who manages the centre, “There was no water for us to drink and we had to buy water bottles from the market.”

“We have been running the centre for the last seven years and have regularly been paying rent which the authorities continued to accept,” said Lt-Col Ravi Bedi, chief functionary of YTTS, who has been served notice to vacate the community centres in Mauli Jagran Colony, Palsora Colony and New Indira Colony.

MC Joint Commissioner TPS Phoolka said, “The removal was demanded by the MC house.” He said it was better you talk to the councillor in this regard. The community centres were leased to the NGO on a full-time basis to educate and provide technical training.



‘Effluents still beyond permissible limit’
Saurabh Malik
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
Less than six months after The Tribune raised a storm over sanitation concerns going down the drain, the Punjab Pollution Control Board informed the Punjab and Haryana High Court that effluents discharged in the “N-Choe” were still beyond the permissible limit.

“The Municipal Corporation, Chandigarh, is not operating the sewage treatment plant (STP) properly and is also discharging the untreated/partially treated sewage into the N-Choe,” the PPCB said in its report.

The PPCB added that action had been initiated against the Chandigarh Administration under the provisions of Water Act of 1974. “Similarly untreated water is being discharged in Mohali as well, and notices were issued to them too. However, the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority has informed that sewage treatment plant is already complete at Mohali and it would be operative soon,” the affidavit added.

In the affidavit, the PPCB also sought direction to the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation and Mohali to stop discharging polluted water in the N-Choe.

The report, filed by the PPCB through assistant environmental engineer Ramji Dass, was placed before the Division Bench of Chief Justice Mukul Mudgal and Justice Ajay Tewari, in the suo motu case based on the reports carried in The Tribune.

As the case came up for resumed hearing, the PPCB claimed the carrying out of a survey on the high court directions. Ramji Dass added that the PPCB collected samples on April 24 of the effluents being discharged. The analysis of the results reveals that pollutants, including “BOD” and “COD” were more than the permissible limit.

Elaborating, he said on July 19 the officer of the PPCB and GMADA carried out a joint survey to identify points falling in Chandigarh and Mohali, where sewage was being discharged in N-choe.

It was added that the STP installed by Chandigarh Municipal Corporation in Sector 66 of Mohali was visited on April 29. It was observed that the corporation had completed the work of upgradation of the existing STP from 15 mgd to 30 mgd. But, it had not been made fully operational. Moreover, the intake of raw sewage into the STP was 40 mgd. As such, 10 mgd of untreated sewage was being bypassed into a channel leading to N-choe.

The news-report in these columns was earlier directed to be treated as a public interest litigation. The Chief Justice had observed: Le Corbusier, who planned the City Beautiful, wanted to retain the water body to keep the residents of the city in contact with nature. “The choe is a seasonal rivulet and the water flowing through it without there being rains for long makes one curious about the origin of water flowing through it.”

Points of sewage discharge

The points where sewage is being discharged in the UT and Mohali are: Two spots near Attawa in Sector 36 and 42; and near Furniture Market in Sector 53. Sewage of area under rehabilitation of slums was also being discharged into N-choe in Sector 53 near Mohali Phase II and near the YPS in Sector 62. The other spots were near PCA stadium in Sector 63 Mohali and near the NIPER bridge in Sector 63



CBI probe sought against Nirvikar
Aarti Kapur
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
The role of Major Nirvikar Singh, former-ADC to Punjab Governor-cum-UT Administrator SF Rodrigues in the garbage processing plant at Dadu Majra came under the Chandigarh Municipal scanner during discussion in the House meeting today with certain Congress councillors demanding a CBI inquiry into the role of the former ADC in making the plant functional.

The issue was raised by Congress councillor Chander Mukhi Sharma when the report on the garbage processing plant was tabled in the House. Sharma, who was the chairman of the committee formed to look into the technical aspects of setting up of the plant, alleged that he was called by Nirvikar to his office and directed not to find faults with the machinery installed by JP Associates.

Sharma claimed that a letter was also issued from the Punjab Raj Bhavan directing the MC to inaugurate the plant without verifying the ground realities regarding the installation of the requisite infrastructure.

Echoing similar sentiments, Devinder Babla reiterated his demand for a CBI inquiry against Rodrigues and Nirvikar. He was supported by his party colleague and former Mayor Pardeep Chabbra.

After discussion, Mayor Anu Chatrath directed officials to place the letter purportedly received from the Raj Bhavan in the next House meeting.



Newborn’s Death
Post-mortem report gives jitters to GMSH 
Arun Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
A blood clot found in the head of the Bulbul’s baby has put the Government Multi-Speciality Hospital (GMSH) authorities in jitters. Bulbul lost her child due to medical negligence at the OPD counter on July 21.

The preliminary post-mortem report of the baby mentions that there was a blood clot on baby’s skull. This, however, has given leverage to eyewitness’ claims that the baby had died after its head hit the floor of OPD at the time of delivery.

However, some grey areas continue to exist regarding the cause of the death. Leading medical experts believe that other possible reasons could include the creation of a blood clot.

Such clots can occur at a time when the baby is weak or delivered prematurely. Under such circumstances, a baby cannot take the pressure of delivery causing intracranial haemorrhage, which leads to death in a majority of such cases, said GMSH gynaecology department head Dr Veena Sarna. A histopathology examination of samples of the baby will confirm the reason of death, she added.

Although a final police inquiry report is expected only after a histopathology examination report is received, the police is preparing to take stern action against OPD attendant Dharma for lack of cooperation in the inquiry. Police sources say different options are being looked into and a legal opinion being sought before any action is initiated.

Though it is believed that Dharma had done no wrong on her own, police is reportedly under an impression that she was trying to save others who were at fault on the day of the incident.

Bulbul’s husband, Chhotu, has told the police that Dharma had prescribed the diagnostic tests for Bulbul when they went to the OPD on that fateful day. Dharma, on the other hand, denied it. The police believes that Dharma could not have prescribed such tests on her own and that it must have been some doctor who might have directed her to do so. Police sources do not rule out Dharma being under pressure to shield some seniors.

Dharma is also in the dock for denying that she had Bulbul’s registration card. However, the CCTV footage shows Dharma holding the card. But Dharma has claimed that what she was holding was not the card but a bed sheet. Police sources say Dharma is shown twice in the footage and in the first round, she had a bed sheet in her hand. But in the second round, she definitely had a card in her hand. 

Slew of investigations

The DNA samples of the deceased baby and her parents were on Thursday submitted to the Central Forensic Science Laboratory in Madhuban. The report is expected to take a month. The histopatholgy examination of the samples of the baby has begun in the Government Medical College and Hospital, Sector 32. The report is expected to be submitted in 10 days.

UT Additional Deputy Commissioner PS Shergill is expected to visit the hospital for the first time on Saturday following the UT Home Secretary’s rejection of an internal inquiry conducted by the GMSH. Both Shergill and GMCH director-principal Dr Raj Bahadur are conducting a fresh inquiry.



ATM card-cloning case cracked, 1 held
Tribune News Service

Mohali, July 30
With the arrest of a conman, Kamaljeet Singh, the Mohali police has cracked the curious case of cloning of ATM cards in the tricity, leading to fraudulent withdrawal of money.The police is also on the lookout of the prime suspect, who is in possession of a special device used to clone ATM cards. So far, at least two major cases of fraudulent withdrawal of around ` 1 lakh have been traced down to the two thugs who had kept the Chandigarh and the Mohali police on its toes for the last two months.

 In both the cases, the fraudulent withdrawal had been done on May 23. A scooter, used in both the cases to withdraw the money, ultimately led to the arrest of Kamaljeet, who was presently residing in Phase X, Mohali.

The conmen are believed to behind more such fraudulent withdrawals. Investigations reveal that the main brain behind the “white-collar” crime was a former manager of the Punjab and Sind Bank, who had duped the bank of Rs 35 lakh. “The suspects have a device used to copy information from an ATM card while being swapped and then clone the card to make the withdrawals,” said police sources.

A Phase IX resident, Ambuj Kumar Sharma, had complained to the police of being cheated of Rs 90,000 after his ATM card was cloned. A case under Sections 420, 465, 468 and 471 of the IPC had been registered at the Phase XI police station. The suspect had withdrawn the money from three different ATMs. The victim had told the police that the cash had been withdrawn from ATMs of the State Bank of Patiala, Canara Bank and Indian Bank.

In the second case, Prabhjit Kaur and Balbir Singh had complained to the manager of Canara Bank, Phase X, that Rs 37,600 had been withdrawn from their account through the ATMs of Indian Bank, Phase XI, and SBI, Phase IX.

Modus operandi

The conmen used to insert a card reader device in the slot used to swap an ATM card. A micro camera was also placed behind the ATM to record the password entered by the cardholder. On the basis of the information, the conmen used to produce a clone ATM card and used it at another ATM to withdraw money



AS Bindra ‘unableto pay Rs 10 cr’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
Ace shooter-cum-Olympian Abhinav Bindra’s father AS Bindra today told the Punjab and Haryana High Court that he could not arrange the cash payment of approximately Rs 10 crore - the amount his company Punjab Meats Limited has to pay to Assets Reconstruction Company India Limited (ARCIL).

Bindra, however, told the court that he was ready to transfer 45 bighas in Dera Bassi to the company to clear the payment. Bindra made the offer through an application placed before the

Division Bench of Chief Justice Mukul Mudgal and Justice Jasbir Singh.

Acting on the plea, the Bench issued notice to ARCIL. They have been asked to file their response to the PML plea. The case will now come up for further hearing on August 19.

In his plea, Bindra claimed that he owed a balance of Rs 10,60,12500 to ARCIL. But following his inability to get the huge amount, he was ready to transfer the title of the Derabassi land in favour of ARCIL. The land valued Rs 23,75000 per bigha as per revenue officials of Derabassi.

He added that constant efforts were made by him to find a buyer so that the land could be sold at the earliest. For the purpose, he also issued advertisements in newspapers.

“Very few persons came to purchase the land, but have expressed inability to pay the consideration amount immediately due to depressed market conditions. Even Kotak Mahindera Bank refused to give him payment at the last moment,” Bindra asserted in his application.



Conmen posing as eunuchs beaten up
Ramanjit Singh Sidhu
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
Adopting a somewhat unusual method to dupe people, men posing as eunuchs are on the prowl in the city to prey on unsuspecting people. Two such swindlers who were not lucky enough in their attempt to hoodwink people ran for their lives when they were caught by an alert Sector 18 resident and given a sound thrashing on Thursday.

“Innovation” appears to be the buzzword among these conmen who are coming out with novel ways to cheat 

gullible residents with most of their victims being housewives. Earlier incidents include those in which the latter were defrauded by confidence tricksters of their gold ornaments on the pretext of polishing jewellery and motorists conned by “Muradabadi” gangs who decamped with their money after distracting their attention by scattering currency notes around their vehicles.

In the latest incident two men in their late thirties, attired in ‘salwar kameez’ entered a house in Sector 18D at about 4 in the afternoon without ringing the doorbell or knocking at the door. The housewife, Tripta Gupta, who is in her sixties, was shocked to see them in one of the rooms. She was about to bolt the door after seeing off her maid when a “eunuch” came calling. Before she could realize it the three imposters began clapping and singings songs, pestering her to give them Rs 11,000 as alms.

“When I asked them for what purpose were they seeking alms they said they had earlier come to my house to celebrate the birth of my grandson and had come around again as they needed money to marry 200 girls”, Tripta told TNS while sharing the strange experience, as her younger grandson was born 11 years ago.

She said she began arguing with the three “eunuchs”, telling them she was unable to meet their demand, to which they threatened to curse her. After a while they told her to pay Rs 5,100, which she refused. Hearing the commotion her grandchildren and daughter-in-law came there. Her grandsons called up their father, Neeraj Kumar Gupta, a PGI employee, who talked to the “eunuchs” and told his mother to pay them Rs 100 to get rid of them. Eventually the conmen went away after taking the Rs 100.

Tripta said when her daughter-in-law told her she had seen the three men seeking “alms” at the train station the “eunuchs” did not linger for a single moment at the house and fled.

Neeraj said the “eunuchs” went to another house in their locality but the occupants did not open the door to them. “They then proceeded to another house but the residents were smart enough. They caught hold of the ‘eunuchs’ and gave them a sound beating, realising they were fake”, he added.

Neeraj reported the incident to Sector 19 police station SHO inspector Ram Gopal, who assured him he would probe the matter. “I’ve received the information and the matter is being verified”, he said.

‘Community being tarnished’

“Some miscreants are duping people and are tarnishing our community. People are put to a lot of inconvenience and the police should take action whenever such incidents are reported to root out the menace”, said All India Kinner Association president Meena Mahant


Flash Floods
Give Punjab, Haryana Rs` 3,000-cr aid: BJP
Pradeep Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
National president of the Kisan Morcha of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) OP Dhankar today demanded a compensation of Rs 3,000 crore for the flood-hit Punjab and Haryana.

“The Centre should provide Rs 1,500-crore relief each to Punjab and Haryana besides giving relief of Rs 25,000 per acre to the farmers whose crops were damaged during the recent floods,” Dhankar told mediapersons here today.

Dhankar said a seven-member committee led by Suresh Chandel, vice-president of the Kisan Morcha, toured 189 villages in both states between July 9 and 15 to assess the damage caused to the crops and other properties by the flash floods.

Chandel informed that 1.1 lakh-acre in 756 villages of Punjab and 2.75 lakh-acre in 550 villages of Haryana were affected. Coming down heavily on the land acquisition policies of various state governments, the BJP leader alleged that the states were becoming tools for acquiring poor farmers’ land for business houses.

Claiming that farming has become a “non-profitable” occupation, Dhankar demanded remunerative prices for their produce and inclusion of agriculture in the Concurrent list of the Indian Constitution so that both Centre and the state governments were responsible for the agricultural policies.

‘Punjab gets a raw deal’

The country’s major foodgrain producer, Punjab, has got a raw deal in the 82-member national executive of the Kisan Morcha. While Haryana and Himachal Pradesh have six and three members, respectively, Punjab is way behind with only two. Agreeing that Punjab’s representation was less, Dhankar said the national executive would be broad based in future.



DAV College principal too ‘busy’ to check discipline
Sumedha Sharma
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
Just when discipline at DAV College here has taken a back seat following the recent clashes and brawl on the college campus, principal BC Josan seems too busy with ‘other things’.

The claim surely brings to fore the failure of big promises made by him after the last September’s pre-election violence, where activists of the three leading student fronts indulged in violence with glass bottles, gas cylinders, chairs and even throwing bricks.

Having fallen victim to the pre-student election violence year after year, the college is in dire of a proper discipline mechanism, which seems to be the last thing on authority’s agenda. Following yesterday’s war of words between two student groups, the college authorities held a meeting with Jagbir Singh DSP (Central) today and in name of solution came out with a warning for student leaders.

“We have categorically asked them to either have peaceful elections or we will take strict action which may lead to expulsion,” said Josan.

“I have been, too, busy with several other things and couldn’t pay much attention. We will take steps to avoid such incidents. I have warned them all and will not tolerate any nuisance,” he added. Interestingly, other than his ‘busy’ status, Josan holds deficient public relations mechanism of college as a key reason for its ‘notorious’ image.

“Like several other colleges we don’t scream about our work and thus go unnoticed and negative aspects are generally picked up by the media” he quipped.

Incidents this year

April 12: Satbir Singh Sattu, Gagan and Aman, students of DAV College, allegedly fired on Harsher Singh, another student of the college outside the college.

April 23: Amandeep Singh Multani and Gokul Setia, former students of DAV College, Sector 10, were held regarding the shootout case and brawl on campus in September 2009.

April 29: A group of students today allegedly thrashed Robin Singh, a BA (III) student of DAV College, with hockey sticks and rods outside the college gate.



Committee to check outsiders staying in PU hostels
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
A special search committee, formed by Panjab University authorities, will now inspect hostel rooms to check if any outsiders are staying illegally.Senior faculty members of the university and former hostel wardens will be a part of the special committee.

Following complaints of several hostel wardens permitting former students and outsiders to stay in PU hostels, the authorities today decided to form such a committee.

A day after weapons were recovered from a student leader’s car at gate no. 3, strict inspection was being carried out at PU gates. Thursday’s incident also had an impact at a special meeting scheduled for today between the UT police officials and the PU student leaders.

At the meeting, DSP Jagbir Singh said carrying identity cards would be mandatory for campus students, which would be randomly checked by officials.

The Dean Student Welfare also cautioned the student leaders to remove their posters from the prohibited areas on the campus.

He warned that any defacement would result in strict action as per law. Hostel wardens also attended the meeting and instructions were given regarding the anti-ragging measures. “Students have been advised to create an amicable environment on campus,” said Karamjeet Singh, warden, boys’ hostel no. 4.

The DSP also suggested the students to form a council for social change on campus.

The student leaders were also recommended to meet at a common place to discuss issues related to students’ welfare.


l Carrying I-cards mandatory for PU students

l Special search committee to inspect hostel rooms

l Students’ organisations to remove their posters from prohibited areas



2-yr RI for PGI engineer for graft 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
CBI Special Judge Darshan Singh today sentenced Sandeep Kumar, working as a hospital engineer in PGIMER, to rigorous imprisonment of two years in a graft case.The court also imposed a fine of Rs 25,000 on him.

The court held him guilty under Sections 7, 13 (2), read with 13 (1) (d) of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had arrested Sandeep Kumar, XEN (Hospital Engineering Civil) from the office of the engineering department of the PGI on the charges of taking bribe from a contractor on May 9, 2008.

He had demanded a bribe of Rs 30,000 from the complainant, Jaspal Singh, who used to work with various government departments.

Jaspal had got a contract of providing epoxy wall coating and conductive anti-static flooring in the ICU and the CCU at the Advance Cardiac Care Centre at ther PGI.

Sandeep had demanded a bribe for doing the work smoothly and also threatened Jaspal of blacklisting him.



Allowances of PGI faculty hiked
Anuja Jaiswal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
The agitating faculty members of the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education & Research has finally some reasons to smile as the institute’s standing finance committee (SFC) has hiked several of its allowances including a fourfold increase in the monthly academic allowance from Rs 2,500 to Rs 10,000.

According to sources, the committee had accorded approval for the hike in allowances last Friday and the minutes of the meeting have been finalised. The sources added apart from doubling the conveyance allowance from Rs 1,650 to Rs 3,300 per month, the health ministry has also raised the learning resource allowance (LRA) from Rs 20,000 to Rs 60,000 per year.

The sources said these hikes (except LRA) would be implemented with retrospect from September 1, 2008. The LRA would become effective from this year. With implementation of the hike, every faculty member stands to gain almost Rs 10,000 a month.

The sources said the ministry had also removed the Rs one lakh bar on reimbursement of expenses for attending an international conference. The reimbursement will now be on actual expenses.

Like professors, additional professors will now also be allowed to attend international conferences every year. Hitherto they were allowed to participate in such meets once in two years.



Ex-serviceman Shooting Case
Police clueless about robbers
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, July 30
Even after 24 hours, the police is still clueless about the robbers, who took away ` 78,000 from a cashier of the Uttar Bijli Vitran Nigam Limited after injuring him yesterday on the road separating Sectors 26 and 27 of the city.

The police is working on several theories like the way yesterday’s robbery was executed seems to be the handiwork of some expert gang.

The police had shown photographs of some of the notorious elements to the injured BN Borax and Vichitter, working for Haryana Ex-Services League. The police is also scrutinising the profiles of various thieves, who remained active in the region during the past few years, but staying dormant for some time.

After inquiry, the police has also managed to draw a few sketches, which have been circulated in all police stations in the state. The police is also tying-up the Chandigarh and Mohali police to get the details of the thieves. The police teams were also sent to Yamunanagar and Saharanpur to conduct raids at the hideouts of the accused, the sources added.

Superintendent of Police, Maneesh Chaudhary said nakas near Ramgarh village would be strengthened by posting more jawans as the robbers have possibly escaped. He said he failed to understand why the UHBVN was not availing the services proved by their department for the safe transfer of money, while other departments were using the same.

While agreeing to “no lessons have been learnt from last year’s robbery”, AK Jain, director operations of UHBVN, said as the job of collecting money had been outsourced to league. He said the Nigam had decided to direct the league to take the services of the police department.

Meanwhile, the Haryana State Electric Board Workers Union today held a meeting at the Power Colony in Industrial Area.

Pushpinder Kumar, president of the union, demanded that the board to provide the van and security guard to cashiers, who collect money on behalf of the UHBVN.



130 more BCom seats in city colleges
Neha Miglani
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
In a crucial decision taken by Panjab University today, 130 BCom seats have been approved for 11 UT colleges.

Four colleges in the city have been sanctioned 15 seats each for BCom, while seven other colleges have been sanctioned 10 seats each by the university. A special committee formed by the Vice-Chancellor, under the chairmanship of Karamjeet Singh of University Business School had recommended the increase in number of seats.

The colleges that got additional 15 seats include GGDSD College, Sector 32, MCM DAV College, Sector 36, SGGS College, Sector 26, and DAV College, Sector 10.

Out of the seven colleges in the city that got 10 seats each, there are five government colleges of the city, including Postgraduate Government College, Sector 11 and Sector 46 and Postgraduate Government College for Girls, Sector 42 and 11. GGSCW, Sector 26 and Dev Samaj College also figure in the list.

In the joint counselling for BCom in PU affiliated colleges held this year, close to 1,000 applicants could not make it to the merit list in most colleges. Out of 2,100 total commerce seats in all colleges in the city, 60 seats were vacated after the first counselling.

These include those students, who couldn’t deposit fee or got admission to some other courses.

Besides increasing BCom seats, the Vice-Chancellor today also approved 145 seats for PU affiliated colleges in Ludhiana. In Ludhiana 80 seats were vacated after the first BCom joint counselling.



Draft of BCom syllabi finalised
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 30
A special committee constituted by the Panjab University authorities today finalised the draft of new syllabi for BCom course offered in the affiliated colleges.The update course is likely to be uploaded on the PU website after August 15.

The new BCom syllabi would consist six foundation courses, which include business ethics, managerial and soft skills development, fundamental of information technology, Indian constitution and commerce and fundamentals of business management.

The commerce students at the graduation level would also be required to study two compulsory languages, which include English and Punjabi. In addition to these, the committee has also shortlisted 12 inter-disciplinary courses to be selected by the students. “The BCom course has now been divided into two broad courses, one is BCom pass course and BCom honours course. In the former, the student will be required to pass 36 subjects in three years and in honours, 40 subjects will be taught,” said committee coordinator Karamjeet Singh of University Business School.



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